The graph above, generated a couple of years ago by Kei Koizumi at the American Association for the Advancement of Science, provides a hint. The yellow band in the graph is, in essence, a portrait of the space race as reflected in federal money for basic R&D related to going into orbit and to the Moon. (The purple band is essentially the war on cancer and similar health research. Military research, at $75 billion a year, doesn’t fit in this graph.)Interesting look at where government R&D spending is going. Also amazing that the military research budget is 50% higher than everything in the graph above. Instead of trying to increase the energy R&D budget, I would try and redirect military R&D to energy projects. This makes sense for military reasons and would also be easier politically as conservatives give a free ride to anything in the federal budget labeled "military spending".
The green band is a half-century of federal investment in energy research. And that’s not just renewable energy like solar power, but research in all energy sectors. To me, the energy graph resembles an emaciated python that had one decent meal.
via Dot Earth